NPR Interview about Montreal
Dave Does NPR Radio Interview
I just had a long phone interview which was recorded for an upcoming NPR radio show with Brian Mann, Chief, Adirondack News Bureau, National Public Radio affiliate, North Country Public Radio, St. Lawrence University, Canton, New York.
The discussion was about Montreal as a sexworker destination for American men and if this was good or bad for the problems of trafficking in women and under aged prostitutes.
My response was in "my world" of Internet boards and contacts, under aged and trafficked was virtually unheard of.
On sexwork.com for example I host the "Montreal Spreadsheet" that lists nearly 200 agencies, 700 escorts including about 170 independents. I very much doubt if any of them are under aged or trafficked. I've been a active on Canadian discussion boards
for 8 years and have never found anyone seeking under aged- in fact lots of discussions of avoiding such. Every discussion I've ever heard is about consenting adult private sexworkers.
When a place is busted and on the news for under aged, it is a place either almost no one has heard of, or known to have questionable escorts and avoided by most. In the Internet World there is just no demand or interest in under aged and rarely ever hear of suspected trafficking problems.
I guess it exists but I do not know where the demand or resources to find comes from. The streets, or maybe there are pedophilia groups, looking for children but I've never heard of them. In fact if someone offered me a huge amount of money to find an under aged prostitute, I would be unable to do so.
Another issue was with the popularity of Canada for U.S. customers (without legal issues, exchange rate advantage and lower prices since so many more women choose sexwork when its legal) and if that the promoting of going to Canada for prostitutes results in more under aged and trafficked women. My response was the fact there are zillions of review boards, websites, with so many consenting adult private sexworkers, they are easy to find I can't imagine where the demand for children is coming from. It's not from the world I know of on the Internet.
It was a long interview, I don't know how much will be used, but the reporter seemed to be very pleased with all I said supportive of the consenting adult sexworkers of Montreal and benefits of it being so open, accessible, legal, and reasonably costs which is a mutual benefit for U.S. customers and the Canadian economy! It doesn't result in any exploitation in any way of under aged or trafficked women.
I do not know when it will air but he was anxious to talk with me and indicated he was finishing up his report for NPR.
Dave in Phoenix
Thanks Dave. Look forward to hearing it.
Train I should have remembered those figures. Good point, I am active on Toronto boards so know all about the raid.
Eager Beaver - yes lots of discussion on the Toronto boards also. Whatever trafficing there is is very narrow and tiny part of providers (Russian agencies suspected in Toronto but not that clear).
On underaged I can't figure out where the demand for it is coming from. I've never seen on the public boards either in the U.S. or Canada people looking for it,but avoid anyone who might seem underaged. It defintely is happening, probably mostly on the streets but in the Internet world I just don't see it.
The discussion of "underage" or "sex slaves" is one of buzzwords and public outrage. It is good spin doctoring to cover up the hassling of consenting adults.
Over the last 10 years, I have seen how the politicians have infiltrated the police forces, and have started to use "good" spin techniques to turn stories to their advantage. In order to appear to be getting "tough on those perverts", they site the most excessive cases, the things that they know the media will pick up and run with.
Further, the media has over the same time become lazy, controlled by deadlines that do not allow them the time to investigate stories properly, and the public's fickle finger on the remote control. Those things allow the spin doctors to put stories in the media that, while based on truth, only disclose the truth that is desired, not the whole truth.
"5 MINORS FOUND WORKING AS SEX SLAVES IN PROSITITION RING"
Plays out much better than:
"99% OF MASSAGE PARLOUS IN GTA ARE CLEAN AND LEGAL"
Basically, the fact that the MPs were found to be within the law, generally clean, and generally not in violation of city bylaws doesn't make for a very good press release. That would get dumped on page 99.
"MINORS IN SEX SLAVE RING" gets front page with pictures.
In the US, the politicians refer to the "news cycle"... that is the period of time between major network newscasts where ONE story will lead, ONE story will be second, and others will be spread out in different orders on different newscasts. Their objective is to take control of those first two places, and to put the most favorable news possible into those slots. On a day when something bad comes out, there is often a big press event or other to cover up and hopefully push the story down the order. If you can get a story outside of the first three, it is not covered as extensively, doesn't appear in the promos, blurbs, and bumps in other programming, etc.
The child prostitution thing is "easy news"... the stations and networks love the stuff because it outrages the public, and will get them to watch the news to find out what has happened "to those poor kids". "MP's found okay" won't get much play, now will it?
We are all victims of the "spin" process... it is sad that the media no longer has time to present both sides of stories, rather relying on pre-made press releases as a substitute for a little work and follow-up.
It is all political. It shows that Canada has problems and thus in this light, the problems in the US are "Normal" and thus need no special attention.
Originally posted by EagerBeaver
Excellent points regarding media coverage in general. It should be noted that several recent scandals have broken regarding reporters with the New York Times and the USA Today who were found to have fabricated parts of their stories. I don't think the phenomenon is limited to the US however, based on my own reading of Canadian newspapers as well as links to articles in Canadian media provided by Captain Renault and others.
What remains curious is why the US media is focusing on child prostitution in Canada as opposed to in the US. Perhaps there are political and practical reasons for doing so, and perhaps there is something more to it.